The Vow: Film Brings Forgotten Love to Light

Tipped 1996; “The Vow” starring Rachel McAdams and Channing Tatum aired 2012.
THE VOW -- Premiere,Stars&Couple-SonyPicA
Channing Tatum and Rachel McAdams with Real-life story couple Kim and Krickitt Carpenter

THE VOW, the 7th highest-grossing romantic drama in film history, tells how a young couple’s love survived a life-changing case of amnesia. The 2012 movie was based on the non-fiction book of the same title, written by survivors Kim and Krickitt Carpenter.  While their real-life journey from memory loss to renewal of their wedding vows took more than two years, do you know what took eight times longer? Putting it up on the big screen!

When he was tipped to the couple’s true story in 1996, Tom Colbert knew it was a slam dunk for a feature film. He immediately rang up one of his producer partners, Paul Taublieb, telling him to head to the airport and book the first flight to the couple’s home state of New Mexico.

“I went out there and as it happened, there were 47 producers who had also contacted the Carpenters,” said Taublieb, who lives in Malibu, California. “I was fortunate enough to be the first one [there] and the one they put their trust in. It was a real feeding frenzy. Everyone wanted their story.”

Getting THE VOW into the theatres, however, was anything but a Vegas wedding. Everyone involved knew it had a powerful, universal message, but in a nation hungry for action movies and sequels, the small-town love story couldn’t get a studio green light.  “We prayed for many years about when and if a movie would ever actually be released,” recalled Kim Carpenter.

Sixteen years, a dozen scripts and a like number of leading actresses later, a miracle named Rachel McAdams came into the picture. The star said she’d do it… IF she could pick her leading man (Channing Tatum). The rest is date-night history.

“The lesson the Carpenters taught me is that the most valuable possession we have is each other,” said Colbert.

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